Lag BaOmer in the North in the Shadow of the War

Police block the entrance to Meron, ahead of Lag BaOmer, May 22. (David Cohen/Flash90)

An emergency law passed Tuesday by the Knesset shuttered the tziyun in Meron for all but a handful of approved attendees over Lag BaOmer. The site was also declared a closed military zone by Israel Defense Forces Home Front Command chief Rafi Milo, blocking public access through Monday, May 27.

Project Director of the Lag BaOmer events in Meron Rabbi Yossi Deutsch cautioned in an interview against attempts to infiltrate Har Meron: “Anyone attempting to ascend Har Meron is endangering their lives; these are areas where rockets have fallen.”

The police emphasize that the measures this year are designed to ensure public safety and security. Since the start of the war, dozens of rockets have been launched toward Har Meron, with many landing in areas traditionally traversed by tens of thousands of people.

From this afternoon (Thursday), significant police forces, Border Police units, and traffic officers will begin operations on Har Meron. These officers will be stationed on roads leading to the settlement of Meron and its surrounding areas to prevent entry by non-residents until Monday, the 19th of Iyar. The tziyun compound will be closed to the public.

It is important to note that access for journalists is limited to those who have received prior approval from the Ministry of Yerushalayim and Heritage.

Police roadblocks on roads leading to Meron will prevent entry by unauthorized individuals. In the fields and forests around the settlement, Border Police officers equipped with special observation tools and off-road vehicles will be deployed to prevent any attempts to reach the site on foot.

Police warn that violating the law and staying in the Meron compound constitutes a criminal offense, and fines may be issued to violators.

Furthermore, according to the current order and legislation, it is prohibited to rent out guest units in Meron until May 27. Therefore, renters staying in the Meron compound will be committing an offense.

In an appeal to the public, police have stressed the importance of complying with the guidelines, avoiding reaching the roadblocks, and refraining from unnecessary confrontations with officers. If necessary, officers will remove people or vehicles staying illegally by force and pursue legal action against violators.

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